What You Need To Prepare Homemade Essential Oils
Homemade Essential Oils
If you find it quite expensive to keep buying essential oils from health shops and the supermarket, it does make practical sense to prepare them at home instead. It is actually quite a simple process once you know how to do it.
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Possible Sources of Essential Oils
The plant materials you use to extract essential oils is the most important ingredient. There are different categories of essential oils, which depends on the source of plant material: floral, herbal, earthy, among others. Examples are listed below:
*Flowers – Possible sources include rose, lavender, jasmine, neroli, frangipani, marigold, lotus, vetiver, orange blossom, etc.
*Herbs – Possible sources include thyme, peppermint, basil, marjoram, rosemary, lemon balm, etc.
*Spices – Possible sources include coriander, nutmeg, cumin, cloves, cinnamon, etc.
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Carrier Oils and Its Role
Although natural, some essential oils can be highly concentrated that when they are applied directly on the skin, it can cause irritation and other adverse reactions. Therefore, carrier oils play an important role in aromatherapy in ensuring the safety of the individual without reducing the benefits. To avoid confusion, carrier oils are also called base oils.
Without carrier oils, one cannot experience the benefits of the essential oils. They are commonly used in aromatherapy applications that require a direct contact of the essential oil to the skin. An example would be massage and bath. In the former, the presence of carrier oils make it easy for the hands to glide over the skin.
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Most Popular Carrier Oils
Some types of essential oils are mild enough to act as carrier oil. To learn more about your options, there are some popular carrier oils that are widely used in aromatherapy. Most of them are easily accessible but you have to know the properties of each one to suit your intended purpose.
Avocado oil is an edible oil extracted from the fruit of the same name and is known to be one of the healthiest types of oil as well. Given the fact that it is edible, avocado oil is commonly used in several dishes for its capacity to enhance the flavor of the dish.
It makes a good type of essential oil because it is highly diluted while at the same time rich in vitamin A and trace minerals. These same properties also render Avocado oil effective for skin and hair care.
This particular vegetable oil is quite common and popular as carrier oil in aromatherapy. If you are familiar with the smell of olives, then it is basically the same type of scent produced by the olive oil. The texture of the oil is quite heavy with color ranging from light to medium green.
The wide use of olive oil in cooking has rendered it quite popular. Do take note though when adding olive oil in formulations and blends to use in aromatherapy application to ensure that it is applied in the right amount as it has the tendency to overpower the essential oil solution.
Sweet Almond Oil
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Sweet Almond Oil
This carrier oil is pale yellow in color and is one of the more popular choices in aromatherapy. It comes with a subtle smell but is very nourishing as it is rich in vitamin D and protein. Hence, sweet almond oil is a common ingredient in cosmetic products for it is known to effectively moisturize the skin and giving it a soft glow.
It is also a versatile oil as it can be effective for all skin types. Recently, it has been used as a main natural oil ingredient in creams, soaps, and facial moisturizers.
Rose Hip Oil
Rose hip oil exudes an earthy but mild aroma. With a shelf life extending between 6 to 12 months, it is popular as a carrier oil in aromatherapy. Plus, this specific oil is rich in vitamins such as E, C, and essential fatty acids. Thus, it is very effective for treating skin conditions.
You will need only about 10% of rose hip oil to dilute essential oils. One disadvantage to using rose hip oil is that it leaves a slight film of oil on the skin.
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Since this particular carrier oil comes from nut ingredients, hazelnut oil emits a nutty and sweet scent. It possesses a very thin viscosity and is ideal for use as carrier oil in aromatherapy, especially for those with naturally oily skin. First off, it penetrates well into the skin that allows fast absorption of the oil's therapeutic properties. Second, it has the right consistency that makes it quite effective as carrier oil during massage.
Jojoba oil produces a distinct but pleasant smell that comes with a golden yellow color. If you want a carrier oil that facilitates in the fast absorption of the essential oil in your skin, then this one makes a good choice.
Jojoba oil is widely used as carrier oil during massage due to its anti-inflammatory properties.
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Other Materials You Need
Preparing your own essential oils at home does not require any complex materials. Most of them are even household items. Check below for some of the materials you will need and their corresponding usage:
- Container or jar – Apparently, this will be utilized for containing the essential oils once you have extracted them from the plant source. You also need a jar with a lid for storing the essential oils later on.
- Measuring Devices – Proper measurement is vital in ensuring that you are using the right amount of essential oils. Although mild and gentle, adding a little too much of them in the solution can lead to skin irritation and other reactions.
- Pen and paper – This will be used to take note of measurements for corresponding essential or carrier oils you have used. With several oil types you have to handle, writing them down is your safest bet to avoid miscalculation.
- Clean cheesecloth or muslin – This will be utilized to cover the top of the bowl after crushing the leaves of the plant or herb you are extracting oils from.
- Dark glass bottle – Some types of oil are phototoxic, which means that you have to allow as little sunlight as possible. Using dark glass bottle will prevent light to penetrate into the oils inside the bottle.
- Vitamin E gel caps – This will serve as a natural preservative to avoid the oils from spoiling quickly.